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The Long Term Plan.

After a very well attended Annual general Meeting, the club has passed the Long Term Planning Committee’s Report with a few comparatively minor amendments and reservations.  It is now necessary to swing straight into action, and the following notice from the Hut warden should therefore be carefully noted:

As from the FIRST OF DECEMBER 1967, members’ Belfry dues will be increased to 3/- (THREE SHILLINGS) per night.  Half of this will be allocated to the Hut Fund.  Visitor’s fees will remain as at present for the time being, but will be increase to FIVE SHILLINGS per night when the new Belfry is completed.  The Committee felt that it would be unfair to increase visitor’s fees until we had something to offer them; neither should they be expected to contribute towards the new building at this stage.

Also, as from the FIRST OF DECEMBER 1967, members wishing to book a bunk in advance will be asked to pay in advance and this payment will not be refunded if the bunk is not claimed.  The payment will, however, entitle the bunk to be claimed at any time during the night.  In the event of the Belfry being fully booked, casual visitors will be offered any unclaimed bunks after midnight on Saturdays on the understanding that they may have to move out if the original claimant appears.

Arrangements involving visiting clubs will be made by agreement with the Hut Warden.

The following notice is also of great importance to all club members: -

As from NOW, subscriptions rates have been increased to the following rates: -

Life Membership                               £ 10.10.0.
Full Membership                              £   1.05.0. Annually
Joint Full Membership                       £   1.15.0. Annually
Junior Membership                           £      15.0. Annually
Joint Life membership                       £ 14.14.0

Special arrangements involving the Belfry will be notified as and when applicable as the scheme gets under way.



The 1967 Annual General Meeting opened with a quorum present at 10.45am.  Later, a total of 42 members were present.  It was proposed by Alfie and seconded by Frank Darbon that “Sett” be elected as chairman.  This was carried.  The Chairman then asked for three volunteers for the ballot.  Frank Darbon, Sybil and Pat Ifold came forward.  The Chairman then asked the meeting whether, in view of the business to get through, the minutes of the 1966 meeting should be taken as read.  This was agreed.

The Hon. Secretary’s Report followed.  This was read by the Chairman.  The report described the year past as a Year of Achievement and described briefly the main features which had justified this title.  He finally thanked all who had helped him during his year of office. There was no discussion, and the report was adopted after being proposed and seconded by Alfie and Mike Luckwill.

The Hon. Treasurer’s Report followed.  He said that the accounts showed a healthy position although he would have welcomed a little more expenditure on tackle.  The report was adopted without discussion by a proposal from Dave Irwin seconded by Gordon Tilly.

The Caving Secretary’s Report followed.  A high level of caving activity had been maintained throughout the year, and this included much work of a serious nature as well as plenty of the more usual sporting caving.  The report was adopted without discussion.  The proposal was by Phil Townsend seconded by Dave Irwin.

The Climbing Secretary’s Report came next.  Climbing had been adequately practiced during the year and a number of trips organised. The adoption of the report was moved by Roy Bennett and seconded by Bob Bagshaw.

The Tacklemaster then gave a verbal report.  We now possessed 905 feet of ladder and none had been lost during the year.  We also possessed 1,500 feet of rope and ten karabiners.  There was a good collection of Maypole pieces thanks to Bill Smart.  The Chairman asked whether this amount of tackle was adequate. Alan Thomas thought not, but a general discussion revealed that the meeting thought it was.  Kangy asked if we were in the habit of loaning tackle to other clubs, and if so, on what conditions?  He was against the use of club tackle by cavers who might come to regard this system as an alternative to joining the club.  The Chairman asked Kangy to bring this up later as a member’s resolution.  Dave Irwin asked about the condition of the rope.  This led to a long discussion on the subject of the best type of rope and the conditions under which it should be used and maintained.  Dave Irwin finally proposed “that next year’s committee be asked to look into the problem of ropes and instruct the Tacklemaster to purchase recommended ropes.”  This resolution was seconded by Gordon Tilly and passed.

The Hut Warden then gave his report.  The bed nights were 1,607 – as compared with the last two years of 1,431 and 1,527. The report was adopted after a proposal by Phil Townsend and seconding by Bill Smart.

The B.B. Editor then gave his report.  He said that the year had not been a particularly good one for the B.B., and that on one occasion; two months had to be combined into one issue.  It was mainly this difficulty of getting material which had led him to announce his retirement.  He said that a new Editor had been found – Dave Irwin – and he was sure that members would give him their full support.  Alan Thomas suggested that a vote of thanks be given to the editor for his work over the past years.  Kangy said that in his opinion, regularity was a very important feature of a club magazine, although the editor had often been short of material, he had only slipped two issues during his term of office.  A unanimous vote of thanks was accorded by the meeting.

At this point the Chairma announced the results of the election for the 1976 – 1968 Committee. Votes, in order of numbers cast in favour were as follows: - Dave Irwin, Bob Bagshaw, Alfie Collins, Andy MacGregor, Norman Petty, Gordon Tilly, Alan Thomas, Eddie Welch and Phil Townsend. These were thus the members of the Committee.

The Editor of the Caving Publications then gave his report.  The big job of producing the parts of the Definitive Report on Cuthberts was well under way, with some of the parts out and more in the pipeline. Sales of other reports had done well and more were now completely sold out.  The report was adopted after being proposed by Dave Irwin and seconded by Frank Darbon.

The Librarian then gave his report.  There was, in fact, little to say, since very few borrowings have occurred since the library had been moved to Dolphin Cottage.  The Chairman urged him to attract more members to the library.  The report was adopted after being proposed by Alfie and seconded by Pat Ifold.

The Belfry Engineer’s Report followed.  He said that the new carbide store had been completed and much useful renovation work done. So much, however, depended on the result of the Long Term Planning Report, that it did not seem worth doing a lot of work at this stage.  During the subsequent questions, Roy asked whether it would be worth getting a charging bank from a colliery.  After some discussion, it was agreed that the charging facilities were adequate and they could be got into working order.  The report was adopted after this had been proposed by Gordon Tilly and seconded by Phil Kingston

Members’ resolutions were taken next.  The first was on behalf of the 1966 Committee to the effect that “A period of five consecutive years full membership shall precede any application for life membership. Life members shall hereafter be required to write annually to the Hon. Sec. to confirm their address.”  An amendment by Alan Thomas seconded by Phil Kingston to reduce the proposal to its first half was carried by all except 1 member   A vote on the amended proposal was again carried - only one member voting against. 

A proposal by Dave Irwin “That this meeting accept in principle the extension of the Cuthbert’s Leader system to include members of other clubs was carried 29 – 5.  A third resolution, again by Dave Irwin, that in principle tackle should not be lent was carried unanimously.  The Chairman then adjourned the meeting for lunch.

The afternoon session was concerned with the report of the Long Term Planning Committee – a copy of which had been sent to all members.  After some detailed queries, the plan as a whole was accepted by the meeting on a unanimous vote, with the proviso that the Chairman of the L.T.P.C. convene a meeting within one month of the A.G.M. to listen to queries.  The remainder of the time was taken up with discussion of the finance.  The Hon. Treasurer was not optimistic about the possibility of a mortgage and the problem of raising money therefore remained.  So far, some 10 bankers orders had been taken out with a further ten promised. John Stafford said that it looked as if the club needed to lay its hands on 1,700 – 2,200 pounds.  The Chairman suggested that the sum could be borrowed from members and there had been offers of £100 towards this.  The treasurer said that loans on a goodwill basis were possible. It was finally agreed that if no grant was forthcoming, an E.G.M. should be held but in the meantime, the committee should proceed with the building of a new Belfry.

Club Officers

Once again we have a new Hon. Secretary.  His address is: -

A.R. Thomas, Westahven School, Uphill, Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset.

The full list of club officers for 1967-1968 is as follows (Members of the committee are in capital letters.)

Hon. Secretary


Hon. Treasurer


Caving Secretary


Climbing Secretary


Belfry Planning Secretary


Hut Warden




Belfry Engineer


Committee Chairman


Minutes Secretary


Editor, Belfry Bulletin


Editor, Caving Publications

B. Ellis

Producer, Caving Publications


Hon. Librarian

D. Searle


The lending of club tackle to cavers other than agreed representatives of caving clubs is NOT ALLOWED. Members are reminded that ONLY CLUB MEMBERS may sign out tackle in future.

Editor’s Note.

A combination of time and space limitations on this B.B. has not permitted the inclusion of the article on Contour Cavern which has been received.  Members may like to be reassured that this will appear in next month’s B.B. and meanwhile we should like to thank the author for his most welcome contribution.

Monthly Notes No 8

by Dave Irwin

Ireby Cavern (Yorks.)

Entrance passage reported to have collapsed above first pitch. The way on is completely blocked (9.10.67.)

Sandpit. (Mendip).

J. Cornwell and members of the B.E.C., W.C.C. and E.S.C.C. have dug various sites in the sides of this huge collapse.  All efforts are now concentrated on one site in the S.E. corner. Partially choked phreatic tube is now being dug.  Length so far is 40 feet approx.

St. Cuthbert’s (Mendip).

Two hundred feet of new passage has been found in the Mud Hall area by Meaden and Priddle. (Sept. ’67).

Little Neath River Cave. ( South Wales)

Off prints of report and survey available from Bryan Ellis.  Price 5/-.  Published by U.B.S.S.

Settle police

Telephone number is Settle 2542 and 2543.  Cavers can still use 999.  Ask for C.R.O. Settle.

C.R.G. Library.

All British periodicals are being transferred to Mr. P.A. Haigh of Halifax.  Enquiries should still be made to Brig. Glennie.

“Aggy Aggy.”

Phil Kingston and other members of the C.D.G. are planning to dive the terminal downstream sump on November 11th 1967.  Sherpas are required to carry equipment to the sump area.  Any volunteers should contact Phil or Barry Lane as soon as possible.

Swildons Hole.

In order to keep the Forty Foot Pot reasonably dry under normal conditions and to reduce the quantity of water on the pitch under near flood conditions, Oliver Lloyd has banged a hole in the stal. at the head of the pitch.  The water is now free to use the rift that runs parallel with the main pot.  It is hoped that this ‘mod’ to the pitch will reduce the number of M.R.O. callouts to the cave.  Whether this re-rerouting of the water will cause further hazards will be seen during the coming winter months.

Nine Barrows Swallet.

The survey made by Warburton and others is published in the September issue of the Wessex Journal.  Also included is Warburton’s sketch survey of (Contour, Boveways, Sludge Pit, etc.)

Port - yr - Ogof.

C. Gilmore has dived the upstream sump.  (Sept. 1967) and explored more submerged passage.  Kingston and Lane (B.E.C.) dived this sump earlier this year.

O.F.D. ( South Wales)

Since the discovery of O.F.D. II, the amount of discovered passage seems limitless.  Recently (Aug. Bank Holiday) some 4 miles of new cave was found at the upstream end of the main streamway which resulted in the opening of another entrance.  The latest news (8.10.67) is that O.F.D. III has been discovered.  It is said to have long passages and is fairly extensive.  O.F.D. is now rumoured to be about 10 miles in length.

Eastwater Cavern.

As many members will already know, the ruckle at the entrance to the cave collapsed earlier this year.  An inter club meeting was held at the Hunters on September 24th and the following agreed. “Shaft to be sunk near the depression to break through to an aven near the Boulderr Chamber.”  Warburton has staked the area.  Phil Romford (S.M.C.C.) has volunteered to organise the dig. Banging to be done by professionals. Mr and Mrs Gibbons were present and said that when the cave was re-opened, all cavers must call at the farm and that 2/- would be charged to all cavers.  Work has commenced on the dig.  (8.10.67.)

Hut Fees.

S.W.C.C. hut fees for visitors are 4/- per day from November 1st 1967.

Council of Northern Caving Clubs. (Address changes.)

Assistant Secretary responsible for meets on Leck Fell, Casterton and Fountains Fell.  J. Morgan, 23 Runnington Ave., Colne, Lancs.  Assistant Secretary for Penyghent, Fountains Fell (except Mr. Coat’s land) and Mongo Gill. J. Rasdell, 6 Monkroyd Ave., Barnoldswick, Colne, Lancs.

M.C.G. Journal (Series 4 No. 3 June 1967.)

This contains useful information including expedition planning and new survey of Holwell Cavern.  Obtainable from Bryan Ellis.


As a result of discussion at the A.G.M., a sub committee has been set up under Norman Petty to decide the best rope of rope the club ought to buy for such purposes as lifelining, hauling etc.

Club Charger.

The charger is out of action.  It is being repaired by Sett and should be back in the Belfry shortly.

Bristol Avon River Authority.

This body has circulated the following letter: -

I am writing to ask the co-operation of your members with regard to a rather ominous problem which has arisen on Mendip.  Oil and other waste liquids are being tipped into swallets, old mine workings and other depressions on the Mendip Hills and if this practice is allowed to go unchecked it will cause irreparable damage to cave systems and, far worse, to the water supplies derived from these rocks.

It is obviously impossible for the water authority to maintain a constant watch over the entire Mendip Hills and so I am hoping that if any of your members sees either oil or other wastes being tipped, or signs that oil has been tipped, they will note the location and telephone the River Authority (Mondays to Fridays 8.45 to 5.30 at BATH 24275).  You may reverse the charges and ask for Mr. Knight of the Pollution and Fisheries Department.”

                                                            Signed R.J. Whittaker, F.G.S. Bath.

Are you any good at Cave Surveying?

The diagram below represents a genuine problem in the surveying of Cuthbert’s, and is given by Roger Stenner to Dave Irwin.  The distance which is required to be worked out is that between survey stations 15 and 4A (the top sloping line on the diagram).  It should be assumed that the lines joining 4A, 14 and 14A and 15 and 15A are both vertical and hence parallel to each other.  The angle of 41 degrees is measured downwards from the horizontal.  Solutions may be sent to the Editor (Alfie at present until the New Year) or to Dave Irwin of Kangy King.  It is understood that there is some form of prize for the best solution.


Caving Reports

Please note that the B.E.C. caving Reports and a wealth of other useful literature of caving, including many surveys are available from: -  

B.M. Ellis,

Send S.A.E. for full list. You may also put your name down for the full quantity of the parts of the Definitive Report on Cuthbert’s and avoid the risk of missing some of these parts as they come out and get snapped up.


YOU OWE THE BELFRY ANY MONEY?  See the Hut Warden if you do.

Financial Statement for the Year to 31st August, 1967.

Annual Subscriptions



£  92. 6.6

Redcliffe levy



£  17. 1.3

Interest: on National Development Bonds



£   11. 3.6

Sales of Car Badges



£    3.10.0

Goods for Resale:





Less Purchases


£    8.  5.1

Annual Dinner:





Less Cost


£    6.15.0


1965-1966 Receipts


£  17.15.10


1966-1967 Recepits




Less exp.

£ 145.6.4

£    4.17.6

Donation etc.



£    9.17.0

New Belfry Fund



£    6. 0.0





Postages and Stationery



£   6.16.9


Paper, etc.

£ 1.2.6

£    1. 2.6



£22. 6.0

£  23. 8.6






Less Fees

£15.  3.3

£   22.14.0



£35.  8.8



Less Sales

£  6.15.0

£   28.13.9

Public Liability Insurance



£    8.10.0

Cave Research Group (two years)



£    6. 0.0

Charterhouse Caving Committee



£    5. 0.0

Upper Wharfedale Rescue Organisation



£    5. 0.0

Council of Southern Cave Clubs (2 years)



£    1. 0.0

Exhibition expenses



£   3.10.6




£ 66.18.2





Total Club monies at 31.8.66


Add surplus as above

£ 66.18.2



Post Office Savings Bank Account

£261. 9.2

Cash Overdraft

£ 38. 4.10